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WYSO Morning News Update: A win for veterans; two bipartisan bills are passed by the U.S. Senate

Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Rob Portman (R-OH)
John Beagle & Gage Skidmore
/
Flickr Creative Commons

Your Morning News Update for June 17, 2022, with Chris Welter:

  • Free fishing weekend
    (WYSO) - This Saturday and Sunday is Ohio's annual free fishing weekend. That means Ohio residents can use the state's hundreds of public fishing locations without purchasing a fishing license. All other fishing regulations, size limits and bag limits still apply. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources recommends you use the Hunt Fish OH Mobile App to help plan your trip.
  • Environmental conference
    (WYSO) - Local political and environmental leaders spoke at a regional sustainability conference in Cincinnati Thursday. They spoke about rising sea levels from climate change making densely populated coastal regions less inhabitable. That could lead to climate migrants moving to rustbelt cities in the Midwest. But City of Dayton Sustainability Specialist Meg Maloney says that even though Ohio doesn't have to worry about catastrophic sea level rise, the region still has chronic climate stressors. A higher frequency of extreme weather events is one example. In 2019, fourteen EF 4 tornadoes came through the Miami Valley.
  • Warmbier legislation
    (WYSO) - Bipartisan legislation named in honor of Otto Warmbier has passed the U.S. Senate just days before the five year anniversary of his death. The Otto Warmbier North Korea Censorship and Surveillance Act provides $10 million dollars annually for the next five years to counter North Korea’s censorship and surveillance of its citizens. The bill also encourages sanctions on people who enable that censorship in and out of North Korea. The bill was authored by U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). It is named after Otto Warmbier, a Cincinnati native who was wrongfully imprisoned by North Korea and died as a result of the injuries he sustained while in custody. The legislation now heads to the U.S. House.
  • Veterans legislation
    (WYSO) - Bipartisan legislation to expand VA benefits to cover veterans exposed to toxins during the service has passed the U.S. Senate. The bill from U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman is named for Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson, a central Ohio veteran who was deployed to Kosovo and Iraq with the Ohio National Guard and died in 2020 as a result of his exposure to burn pits while deployed. It will require VA health care benefits be provided to Post-9/11 combat veterans and add 23 burn pit and toxic exposure-related conditions to VA’s coverage list. It also expands Agent Orange coverage to include more countries where exposure happened. The bill now heads to the U.S. House.
  • Library makerspace
    The Washington-Centerville Public Library held a grand opening ceremony for its new “Creativity Commons” Thursday morning. It’s a makerspace located in the Washington Township RecPlex featuring a variety of technological crafting tools. WYSO’s Claire Myree has more.